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South West has lowest unemployment rate in UK

Unemployment in the South West has fallen by 10% in the last three months Credit: ITV News

Unemployment in the South West has fallen, and now our region has the lowest unemployment rate in the country.

Figures out this morning show 113,000 people were out of work between June and August - a drop of over 10 percent on the previous three months. It's in line with the national trend, Unemployment in the UK has fallen to a seven-year low.

Graduates still struggling to find work in the South West

The latest jobs figures are out and it's good news for our region. Unemployment is down once again across the South West.

But still many people are struggling to find work, including many graduates. Chris Mitchell is one such graduate, who despite having a degree simply can't get work. Seth Conway reports.


Employment Minister says latest figures are positive

Latest job figures out today show that the south west has recorded the biggest fall in unemployment of any region, and now has the lowest rate.

Employment Minister Esther McVey MP says this is very positive for the South West.

The current figure stands at 4.9 per cent, compared with the national average of 6.8 per cent. The jobless total fell by forty one thousand in the first three months of the year, a drop of one point six per cent.

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Record high of over 30.4 million people in work

The number of people in work is now more than 30.4 million people - which is the highest since records began in 1971.

The number of people out of work is falling. Credit: PA

There was a further fall in unemployment today which was fuelled by a record high of 4.5 million people who are self-employed.

The number of people working for themselves jumped by 183,000 from January to March, compared with a rise of 375,000 over the past year.


Full report: Unemployment down in South West

The number of people without a job in the south west is down. According to the government's latest figures five thousand fewer are out of work, that's a fall of six per cent.

But the numbers in traditional salaried jobs with guaranteed hours and paid holidays is falling. John Andrews has been to Axminister, which was badly hit when the town's main employer went into administration.

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Labour: Welfare reform 'has comprehensively failed'

Shadow employment minister Stephen Timms. Credit: PA Wire

Stephen Timms, shadow employment minister, said: "The Government’s welfare reform has comprehensively failed at a time when youth unemployment is edging towards a million, and long-term unemployment is at its highest level in 17 years.

"The Youth Contract is on course to miss its target by 92 per cent, and the flagship Work Programme has not hit a single one of its minimum performance standards."

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